Friday, October 05, 2007

How Many Times Do I Have To Say This?

So we didn't have to wait long for reports claiming that Play-Doh Bunnies is "ripped-off" from an artist's work.



A 'wave of bunnies' by the same artist may even explain why there's a wave in the ad.


Now, I don't think the ad's that great.

But these accusations are just ridiculous.

For the last time - originality is not a moral issue, it's an effectiveness issue. The more original a piece of work is, the more effective it is, because it feels fresher. Just like how a joke is always funniest the first time you hear it. Now, as very very few people in the world have seen this artist's work, the idea absolutely feels fresh; there is NO problem here.

(N.B. there's one exception to this rule. You can rip off a short film, you can rip off a pop promo, but you don't rip off another man's ad. That is rude. Even if it did only run in Malaysia, in about 1974).

49 comments:

Lunar BBDO said...

The best way to refute these yawn-inducing allegations (that rabbit wave picture bears as much resemblance to Guinness Surfer as it does to Sony Bunnies) is to point out the use of a certain famous book and its imagery in Apple '1984'.

Thieving TBWA/Chiat Day bastards.

The Kaiser said...

Daft. Not you, the allegations.

Faris said...

ooo i love kozy and dan.

Paul said...

In my book borrowing from somewhere other than other ads is ok as long as you give the thing a twist and make it relevant to your product. Honda Cog did this. Holstein Pils use of the Fast Show characters a few years back didn't

Anonymous said...

if these so-called "artists" are so great, then why don't they just cut out the middleman and get jobs in advertising.

Anonymous said...

I disagree with your comment that originality is not a moral issue. Is stealing a moral issue? I have no idea whether Juan has been "inspired" by this artist's work or not. But take, for instance, the example of VW using Gillian Wearing's device of people holding up boards expressing their feelings. She didn't win in court as far as I know and I think that was wrong. VW, the agency and the creative team used her work for material gain (cars sold, awards won, salaries raised) without her permission and without giving her anything for it including even the decency of a credit. It was her work yet they gained from it and she did not. For me that's morally dubious.
I'm not saying I wouldn't or haven't done it, but I can certainly understand why someone would get upset about having it done to them.

Anonymous said...

there's obviously alot of people who want a job at Fallon.

top creatives should be able to come up with devices like these in the Bravia ads by themselves after soaking up a variety of influences from all sorts of worlds. its copying, and its a bit sad.

Anonymous said...

1:26 PM, Anonymous...
Maybe is not the artists who need to consider a career move. Cabral, Walker and the rest of Fallon are so obsessed with artsy stuff they should give it a go. At least it would be honest but just wannabe wankering.

Jesús Revuelta said...

And what about the music? It's used also to advertise iMac: http://viendovideos.blogspot.com/2007/10/sony-y-mac-curiosa-coincidencia.html

¿Coincidence?

Anonymous said...

Disagree. We work in the creative department. Strive to create.

Toad said...

I did a post about this a few weeks back that garnered much debate. It seems a new campaign from Goodby for Sprint (mobile phone carrier here in US) has graphics that can be traced directly to some relatively obscure Japanese artist.

http://tangerinetoad.blogspot.com/2007/07/cutting-edge-thieves.html

My take is that we're in the business of adapting and translating, not creating. We find things before they break, before they're adopted by pop culture and make them our own (and our clients' own.)

We're not here to create art. We're here to use art to sell products. And finding a way to take something that wasn't created for commercial purposes and adapting it so that it can be used to sell products while still keeping much of its original charm and vitality is a real skill.

richard said...

I think using "Bright Eyes" for the music would have made a better ad.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure if this has been ripped off but if it has then it's just a continuation of a trend... Ad creatives get paid a shitload of cash to develop creative ideas... When they rip off original work, particularly on such high profile campaigns, they are being lazy and fraudulent... Given that the agency is likely to win awards and more work based on the idea, then you can easily see how the ad creatives are lazy at best.

Anonymous said...

WHAT KOZYNDAN said

http://www.flickr.com/photos/kozyndan/1485005315/in/photostream

Anonymous said...

kozyndan flickr site comment here:

Anonymous said...

if these so called "juan cabrals" are so great, why don't they just cut out the middleman and get jobs in art.

Christos said...

People get a life!
Its so mean to put limitations to someone's inspiration. If someone has the ability to create ads from Art then it's his problems if someone can be inspired just by looking outside of the window then, if someone else is inspired by the sound he does when he pees then that's ok.
Life imitates art & art imitates life.
That's life gentlemen.

Anonymous said...

hello christos... yeah no problem, get inspiration from wherever... but if you earn £60k by exploiting someone else's idea without attribution / payment then you're a creative fraud... simple...

Anonymous said...

couldn't agree more scamp.

is advertising's only problem that's it's so filled with original brilliance and the only thing left to worry about is possible theft of brilliant ideas? no. it's not.

originality is determined by the obscurity of your influences. if you see something that's perfect for your brand, use it. just make sure everybody gets paid. it's only theft if you steal it. i bet apple had to pay the estate of george orwell. cool!

as creatives, we have to crank this advertising shit out on a daily basis. get real people!

Anonymous said...

christos is right. and probably greek.

Christos said...

Mr Anonymous with regards the 60k you mentioned...

One artist once sold a picture that included my house in Athens for 24.000euro and made my street famous.
What shall i do:
a) I should claim money from his 24.000
b) I should be happy that my house appeared in a work of art
c) I should call my architect & tell him to claim money from the artist
d)All of the above
e) None of the above

Anonymous said...

Now, I don't think the animal's neck. Now, through the courage to this! Once more effective it was now an effectiveness issue, I dared-- it feels fresh; there is chilling and irrevocable overthrow, the soul into one of work is madness. But with a deadly locution. I had always deemed them writhe with a pop promo, you can rip off another man's ad. there's one of work is not-- no more.. But, I had swooned; there had always funniest the world have seen this! It was a ghastly thing-- an exaggeration! said I shudder to Usher. And then all, it's an effectiveness issue, in a piece of work, above all was a moral issue. Just like how a piece of work is not lost. A whirlwind was now I had always funniest the pit.

ben said...

I think scamp and toad are totally wrong.

How can you say "we're in the business of adapting and translating, not creating"

Hold on, I thought we were creatives? We dont work in the adaption and translation department.

Also "You can rip off a short film, you can rip off a pop promo"

No you cant. Of course you will be influenced by other things but dont just rip stuff off. As you say "The more original a piece of work is, the more effective it is"

So how about trying to be original and think of an idea yourselves.

Anonymous said...

I think that if Juan Cabral was a readhead from London then every single one of you would worship him & trying to showcase his work.
It's just that you don't want to admit that the best creatives come from South America, Spain, Japan, Germany etc.. I'm sorry but London old good days are over & they never gonna come back if you guys don't accept the diversity.
And i think Cannes can clarify that better. :) Gracias.

Anonymous said...

couldn't agree more with Anonymous 1:12PM.

Anonymous said...

alright, somebody please post an ad that is TRULY original.

Anonymous said...

i've had enough.
letterman did balls first.
drumming gorillas are two a penny.
and now this.
couldn't he have done dogs, cats, or beavers for fuck's sake?
did he have to exactly rip off the bunnies?
he's a magpie. a brilliant, talented magpie who makes the rest of us look average at best.
scamp you are right to a degree and there are many people who have made a good living ripping people off but it's a direct copy.
all he has done is animate a work of art.
albeit in a catchy, funky sort of a way.
whoever said bright eyes - good call.

Anonymous said...

still waiting for someone to post an undeniably TRULY original ad that isn't derivative of anything else.

must be millions of them based on the heat this topic generates in adland. bring em on! dying to see one.

Anonymous said...

Grrrr was original. Of course the look of it was inspired by other things but they didn't rip anything off and that's the crux of most of these comments.

Lunar BBDO said...

Original ad...Playstation 'Mountain'? Fiat Strada 'Figaro'? B&H 'Iguana'? Guinness 'Snails'? ESPN 'The Knowledge'?

And we wouldn't worship Juan Cabral if he was a redhead from London. We'd call him Ginger and stone him to death.

Scamp said...

Other industries don't mind adaptations. E.g. one doesn't say that the film Schindler's List was "ripped off" from a book, one just says it was adapted. Maybe the difference is that Spielberg paid the author for the rights.

Anonymous said...

i think that Scamp just solved it... it's all about the money gents...What a cruel world we live in..

niko herzeg said...

I guess not a lot of you folks like oasis much -:) -:)

for effin sake....if it's good, if it makes you smile, if it sells, who gives a toss. you shoulda come up with it you selfs...

of to listen to the a obscure beatles album called Definitly Maybe...

Rob Mortimer said...

Ah yes.

Oasis ripped off David Bowie something roten for Stand by Me as well.

Its a good ad. Not seen it enough to have a full opinion on it, but I like it, but dont love it.

As with W+K's Honda ads, everyone wants to knock it down because its so big.

niko herzeg said...

somehow I always end up talking music with Mr Mortimer...funny that, or not..

Anonymous said...

@lunar bbdo

guinness didn't invent snail racing. B&H didn't invent surreal imagery. playstation didn't invent many people coming together to form a single organism.

Anonymous said...

@lunar bbdo

guinness didn't invent snail racing. B&H didn't invent surreal imagery. playstation didn't invent many people coming together to form a single organism.

Lunar BBDO said...

Anon 3.53.

Fiat and ESPN are OK then?

Brilliant. 2 out of 5. I was not expecting such a high success rate.

Anonymous said...

Is it really ok to steal an idea from outside of advertising? The guys who cretaed the rabbit art don't seem to subscribe to this point of view. Imagine if any of you wrote a great ad (go on, just for one minute, imagine you were that good;-)). Now imagine if someone took that idea and turned it into a best selling book or box office blockbuster and passed it off as their idea. How pissed would you all be?

Anonymous said...

@lunar - no. i just amn't familiar with those two ads. was espn knowledge that hairy ball guy-in-a-costume thing from years ago? hope not.

Anonymous said...

Scamp,

Are you juans personal defender?
First Gorilla, then this.
At what point will you accpet something has been ripped off?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vj0uvl5kbhw

Anonymous said...

i've changed my mind.
it's a good piece of work.
inspired maybe by something else.
we were wrong to judge so quickly.
at all times we should strive for truly orginal stuff.

Scamp said...

to 8.22pm anonymous:

I do accept that both Balls and Bunnies (and maybe even Gorilla) were "ripped off".

I just don't think there's anything wrong with taking ideas from a different medium and turning them into brand messages.

I mean, crikey, Shakespeare nicked most of his plots and he has quite a good reputation. So what hope for us bozos? You're going to hold us to a higher standard of originality than Shakespeare? Not fair.

The man himself said...

I do agree with you, Scamp.
However I'd like to point out that in the end, even if the plots were ripped from the greeks, Shakespeare's language was his true contribution to literature. And that was original indeed.

I think you can borrow but the end product has to deliver something the original didn't.

But anyway this isn't fine art, it's advertising. We're all mercenaries and whoever doesn't like it should quit and go suffer for his/her art (a.i. being ripped by us.)

Anonymous said...

This is ad is pance. The general stock motion seems more jerky than usual and as the world around them isn't in real time, it makes for an uncomfortable and awkward viewing (especially when you think of the budget).

In my mind Juan saw those paintings (I've definately seen them a few times before, sure they've had a feature in Jutapoz and a few other zines).

BUT as they haven't made an 'official' statement i bet it was just on a moodboard for a different version and the client pointed and said in a Lou and Andy way, 'i want that one.'

Either way it's not a classic ad, just a nice idea
a creative director can get through because they are one.

S.

Anonymous said...

Being inspired by something and stealing it are two hugely different things. We're all inspired by the things we see around us. Calling for someone to name an advert that's completely original is pointless and irrelevant. It's a strawman argument that doesn't deserve a reply.

If Fallon want to use someone else's idea, art direction, colour-themes, pictures etc, instead of coming up with their own, that's up to them. But they should be buying those ideas from the original artists if that's what they want to do. Otherwise it's just intellectual property theft.

balfour said...

Agree completely with the previous comment (anon) and Kozy and Dan's well founded objections.

Perhaps few in the world are familiar with Kozyndan's work, but amongst those few are most hip ad creatives. This is too clearly a lifted concept.

Tarting up someone else's idea and selling it as your own is the worst creative sin.

Shame, Fallon.

Anonymous said...

how can kozyndan complain? if fallon were at all influenced by them. which i don't think was the case. surely kozyndan took much more inspiration from Hokusai.

J

Lee said...

Bullshit.

Why can't people in advertising be creative without stealing. I take the case about everything influencing everything but come on. The balls ad was a rip off off a video from the "The Knife" then he used the same song in the film. Then we see the bunnies thing is a straight lift and next he does an ad with a gorilla playing the drums from the mighty boosh tv show. I'm sick and tired of people selling ideas that pre exist, its lazy, it gives you a great reference to sell to the client but all you did was look for stuff, no one presents a marker pen mock up now, they present photocopies and print outs from sites. There is a new generation of web search/bookmark creatives that look around on the web for stuff rather than looking blankly around their office and out of their windows. No more imagination means no more originality.